'I've had better ends to holidays': Devastated Brits return to find their cars destroyed in Luton Airport fire

11 October 2023, 13:18 | Updated: 11 October 2023, 13:58

The fire is believed to have destroyed over 1,000 vehicles.
The fire is believed to have destroyed over 1,000 vehicles. Picture: Social media/Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

Devastated Brits have returned from holiday to discover their vehicles have gone up in flames after a huge blaze tore through a car park at Luton Airport.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

As many as 1,200 vehicles are believed to have been damaged in the fire, which began on Tuesday evening.

The airport's terminal two car park partially collapsed as flames engulfed the structure throughout the night.

All flights were suspended from the airport until Wednesday afternoon as Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service continued to tackle the blaze.

But the move caused chaos for many returning home, with them being redirected to different airports and not knowing if their cars were among those to have been turned to ash.

Read more: Chaos at Luton Airport: Moment car park collapses in huge blaze as up to 1,200 cars damaged and all flights suspended

Read more: Dramatic footage shows the moment car bursts into flames inside Luton Airport car park, damaging 1,200 cars

Andrew Hopkinson, chief fire officer for the local fire service, said the fire was believed to have started with a diesel vehicle.

"We don't believe it was an electric vehicle," he said. "It's believed to be diesel-powered, at this stage all subject to verification.

"And then that fire has quickly and rapidly spread."

Chris Meacey - whose van was parked on floor 1 of the car park - told LBC: “I’m either taking it home in an ashtray or I’m driving it home.”

Meanwhile, others who had left their vehicles in the car park shared their concerns online.

One person posted on Twitter: "I am sat 1700 miles away with our car parked level 1 in car park 2. Does anyone know which part collapsed? Only had automated email for Luton. And 5 working days for reply from car park provider #LutonAirport"

The burnt out shells of cars, buried amongst debris of a multi-storey car park at Luton Airport
The burnt out shells of cars, buried amongst debris of a multi-storey car park at Luton Airport. Picture: Alamy

Another person said: "Our @easyJet flight was diverted from Luton to Manchester. No staff at airport to help and the only comms we had was via app to tell us to make our own way home….Oh and my cars on fire."

A third person said: "@easyJet currently stranded in Luton after being taxied from Stanstead. All roads are obviously closed, we should never have been sent here. My car is in the car park and I have no way of getting it. No explanation from anyone. #lutonfire"

Tim Barker, who extended his holiday, tweeted: "When you should have gone home last night but you wake up to this...on the other hand your car could be a melting mess in Luton!"

One couple - Liz and Gary Blackmore from Loughborough - came back from a five-day holiday in Portugal to find their new £48,000 Mercedes had been destroyed.

Mr Blackmore said in a Facebook post: "What a night. Flew back from Portugal to be told that we are being diverted from Luton due to a fire in a car park! 

"So we end up at Gatwick and then find out it's in the car park where I parked my car. 

"So less than a year old car up in flames and the whole structure has collapsed."

He added: "Now we are struck at Bedford train station at 3.45 in the morning with no trains for three hours and a taxi wanting £150 for 53 miles!! I have to say that I've had better ends to holidays."

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Mohammed Abbkr

Paranoid schizophrenic who set fire to two elderly Muslims outside mosques given hospital order

A toddler has been left in critical condition after being bitten by a dog.

Toddler in critical condition after being bitten by 'large breed' dog in Cheltenham home

TOWIE stars Joey Essex and Mark Argent have been left stranded in Dubai

TOWIE stars Joey Essex and James Argent stranded in Dubai flash floods as they try to hitchhike in ankle-deep water

Malmo Arena

Protests and terror threat mean tight security at Eurovision Song Contest

Humza Yousaf hit back at the author.

JK Rowling's 'contempt for women' accusation over misogyny law is 'astonishing and illogical', Humza Yousaf tells LBC

Author Sophie Kinsella has revealed she is battling brain cancer

Bestselling Shopaholic author Sophie Kinsella reveals she has been diagnosed with aggressive form of brain cancer

Karen Hadaway and Nicola Fellows

Police apologise for failings in investigation into 1986 Babes in the Wood murders of Karen Hadaway and Nicola Fellows

A protester uses a loudhailer during a rally in Athens

Unions in Greece call widespread strikes, seeking return of bargaining rights

Some have claimed cloud seeding may be behind recent flooding in Dubai.

Did controversial ‘cloud seeding’ flights cause torrential downpours and huge flooding in Dubai?

Mick Donovan kidnapped Shannon Matthews over 15 years ago

Shannon Matthews' kidnapper Michael Donovan 'dies of cancer' 16 years after hiding schoolgirl in his bed for 3 weeks

Russian soldiers take part in a military exercise in the Donetsk region of Ukraine

14 killed as Russian missiles slam into Ukrainian city

David Cameron has said it is 'clear' Israel is planning to act

Israel is 'making decision to act', David Cameron says in Jerusalem as he urges Netanyahu not to escalate Iran conflict

Starmer and Sunak went head-to-head in the first post-Easter PMQs session

Starmer accuses Sunak of promising £46bn unfunded tax cut as he taunts PM about Liz Truss’ new book at PMQs

David wrote "50 never looked so good"

'50 and fit!': David Beckham shares never-before-seen photos of Victoria as she celebrates her 50th birthday

A homeless person sleeps near the Eiffel Tower

French police evict hundreds from abandoned Paris warehouse ahead of Olympics

Urgent warning to parents as doctor 'arriving from Bangladesh' advertising 'miracle autism cure'

Urgent warning to parents over doctor 'arriving from Bangladesh' with 'miracle autism cure' as cops launch fraud probe